FINANCIAL SERVICES BLOG

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Three Social Security Retirement Myths You Should Immediately Clear Up for Existing and Prospective Clients

With fewer than 20% of companies today offering employee pensions, many older Americans will rely on Social Security and retirement account savings.

For those 65 and up, Social Security benefits make up over one-third of their income, according to the Social Security Administration (SSA).

However, the ratio of workers paying into Social Security and retirees collecting it has decreased dramatically since it the program’s founding in 1935.

In 1940, there were 159.4 workers paying Social Security taxes per beneficiary.

Fifty years later, in 1990, that ratio had dropped to 3.4 workers.

Currently, there are 2.8 covered workers for each Social Security beneficiary, the SSA says.

By 2035, the ratio will drop to  2.3 workers per beneficiary.

Small wonder, then, that people are anxious about the future of the program.

Countering misinformation

Mid and late-career professionals who have paid into the program for years and years, worry their benefits will be reduced.

Meanwhile, younger workers are concerned that there will be nothing left to collect by the time they reach retirement age.

As a financial advisor or insurance agent, you are a retirement planning specialist.

Since you have the knowledge, make sure your clients understand how Social Security works.

This may involve clearing up misconceptions they have.

With that in mind, here are three common myths about Social Security.

1. Social Security covers retiree living expenses

Many people believe they can get by on just their Social Security benefits.

But as AARP explains, Social Security was designed to supplement pensions and other retirement funds.

It wasn’t meant to be a sole source of money.

In fact, you need 70% of your pre-retirement income to live comfortably, according to the SSA.

For people with average earnings, however, Social Security benefits will replace only about 40% of that.

If you’re a high earner, it drops to 30%.

Many folks do seem to know the minimum age to claim benefits is 62.

They also are aware that the longer you wait, the more money you collect.

According to AARP, the average Social Security retirement benefit for 2019 is $1,461 a month.

By comparison, the maximum monthly benefit this year is $3,770.

However, you must be 70 to receive it.

2. Social Security is running out of money

Our second myth is nearly as stubborn as the first.

Kiplinger points out Social Security is funded not only by workers, who contribute 6.2% out of each paycheck, but also their employers, who match the amount.

Therefore, the program cannot go bankrupt.

What gives this belief staying power?

Until 2010, payroll taxes brought in more than enough money to cover retirees and others receiving benefits.

The extra was placed in a trust fund and invested in securities; and the fund collected interest on Treasury securities, along with taxes on some benefits.

However, as MarketWatch explains, since 2010, more money has gone out in benefits than has come in via payroll taxes.

To fill the void, the government began using the interest on the securities.

If this continues, in 2020, the securities will have to be tapped.

And if nothing is done to address the shortfall by 2034, the trust fund itself will be depleted.

But even if this were to happen, Social Security won’t be bankrupted, because payroll taxes will still be generated.

And while it’s possible benefits could be reduced, that is highly unlikely.

Experts agree Congress must eventually deal with this issue.

Legislators will have to consider how seniors will react to losing any of their benefits – and how Americans will feel about paying more taxes to fund the benefits.

Which brings us to myth number three…

3. People don’t pay taxes on Social Security

The short response to this one is: it depends.

According to the SSA, about 40% of those collecting Social Security must pay income tax on their benefits.

They helpfully provide some examples:

  • You file a federal return as an individual and have a combined income between $25,000 and $34,000, you might have to pay taxes on up to 50% of your Social Security benefits.
  • If your combined income is higher than $34,000, that increases to as much as 85%.
  • On the other hand, if you file a joint return, if you and your spouse have a combined income of $32,000 to $44,000, you could have to pay taxes on 50% of your benefits. (That goes up to 85% if your combined income is over $44,000.)
  • Finally, if you are married and filing separately, you are likely to pay income tax on your benefits.

Note: the SSA defines “combined income” as the total of your adjusted gross income, plus non-taxable interest, plus half of your Social Security benefits.

Educate your clients

We have now examined three of the biggest myths surrounding Social Security.

Whether Congress will make changes to this massive government program, remains to be seen.

As a financial advisor or insurance agent, it’s important that you familiarize your clients with the basics.

To establish yourself as an authority on this subject in your community, consider LeadingResponse turnkey Social Security workshops.

This is an ideal platform for you to share valuable information with prospective clients and grow your business.

 

 

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Forget Those Horror Stories You’ve Heard About the Dinner Seminar as a Business Development Strategy

It’s an all-too familiar story. You’re a financial professional who believes dinner seminars are not worth the effort and expense.

When you tried one, you didn’t get the results you expected.

So, you washed your hands of this marketing tactic for good.

What you’ve actually done, is missed out on $100,000 in additional revenue each year since you made that decision.

Do we have your attention now?

Food for thought

What if you were handed an iron-clad guarantee that a dinner seminar (or workshop) will achieve your goals?

Who can promise you a positive outcome without any risk on your part?

LeadingResponse can, via our Seminar Assurance pay-per-reservation program.

You determine the number of RSVPs that will make your dinner seminar profitable.

We take it from there.

How it works

To start, we ask you four simple questions.

Then we use the answers to calculate how many RSVPs you need for your dinner seminar.

It’s that easy.

Using a mix of digital and direct marketing, LeadingResponse finds highly qualified prospects and invites them to the event.

Lots of experience

After promoting 1,000,000 seminars, we’ve made every mistake there is – so you don’t have to!

Drawing on nearly 25 years of historical data, we will select the top performing venues at the best times.

Next, we will craft just the right invitation to fill your events with targeted prospects who need your expertise.

All you need to do is to deliver your presentation to a room full of motivated attendees.

If we don’t secure the RSVPs you’re looking for, we will refund you for the number we fall short.

Streamlined RSVP process

Our RSVP platform gives you real-time access to your dinner seminar responders.

This way, you can reach out to prospects during the registration period and begin the relationship-building process. Plus, it identifies those who wish to reschedule, as well as no-shows.

Successful sales professionals know how critical follow-up is in setting appointments and building a client base.

If you don’t, you’re probably in the wrong line of work.

We make it easy

To help streamline the dinner seminar RSVP process, our platform can be integrated with internal company CRM systems such as Redtail and Salesforce.

And our flexible pricing options make dinner seminar marketing more affordable than ever.

Therefore, if you’re serious about acquiring better leads and landing new clients, Seminar Assurance could be the program for you.

Remember, only LeadingResponse offers a money-back guarantee. *

Contact us today to learn more and get started!

 

*Terms and conditions apply.

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Accurate Responder Data Critical to Online Seminar Marketing Success

Financial advisers and insurance agents are increasingly turning to the internet to boost their business.

Specifically, they are jumping on the online seminar marketing bandwagon.

There are a couple of likely reasons for this:

Just about everyone their age is now online.

It’s also a low-cost way to generate leads and acquire clients.

Booming on the web

According to the J.D. Power U.S. Financial Advisor Satisfaction Study released in July, the average adviser is 55 years old, and about 20% of them are 65 and up.

These professionals have discovered online seminar marketing is an effective means of cultivating prospects – many of whom are, like themselves, members of the Baby Boomer generation.

(Born between 1946 and 1964, the youngest members of this rapidly expanding demographic are currently 55, while the oldest are 73.)

According to an article in Forbes citing research by Google, Baby Boomers today spend more time on the internet than they do watching television. And over 80% of them have at least one social media account.

Meanwhile, Statista, a provider of market and consumer data, determined as of June 2019, Boomers had an average of 4.6 social media accounts, primarily Facebook and LinkedIn.

So much for the idea that older Americans don’t use social media!

Exclusive data

Now you know why growing numbers of advisers and agents are incorporating digital technologies into their business development efforts.

If you are considering a digital campaign for the first time, however, you may wonder what makes one service provider different from another.

It’s the data.

For example, as the original seminar marketing company, LeadingResponse has gathered millions of responder records.

Since 1995, we’ve marketed exclusively to people 55 and up. No one else in the industry has such an extensive database.

We use it to drive responses through Facebook, Instagram and other online platforms and networks.

In fact, we have a designated Facebook representative and direct access to unique targeting options to power your campaigns.

Growth through digital

LeadingResponse offers SeminarConnect® to businesses across a broad spectrum of industries.

This digital marketing package includes:

  • Modeling of look-alike audiences that are pre-qualified financially, created from over four million seminar responders
  • Mobile optimized registration pages incorporating your brand and seminar information
  • Real-time RSVP access via our online platform
  • Choice of using our seminar presentation or developing your own
  • Superior campaign support from start to finish

Better prospects

When you choose LeadingResponse to manage your digital seminar marketing, you can expect us to meet or exceed your seminar registration goals.*

If we don’t, we will issue you a 10% refund on your package or apply a 15% credit on your order toward a future digital seminar campaign.

Contact us today to find out how we can help you take your business to a higher level by harnessing the power of digital marketing.

 

*Terms and conditions apply. Advisor/agent must follow seminar best practices.

 

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People Need Your Retirement Planning Solutions to Avoid Outliving Their Savings

Did you know 75% of Americans manage their own money?

So says the Invest in You Savings Survey released in April by CNBC and Acorns, a micro-investment platform.

It means three out of four people are responsible for their own retirement planning solutions.

If that fact startled you, get ready for the next revelation. This one comes courtesy of a December 2018 Confronting the Money Taboo survey by investment management firm Capital Group:

People are more comfortable discussing their marriage problems, mental illness, drug addiction, race, sex, politics and religion, than they are talking about money.

Addressing a gnawing worry

It’s no surprise, then, that the topic of retirement makes some folks uneasy.

According to recent article by The Motley Fool, 47% of working adults who participated in a recent Gallup poll said they were concerned about having enough money to live on for the duration of their retirement.

That’s up from 32% of workers who responded to the poll in 2002, the year Gallup started compiling the data.

Americans fear the future for a number of reasons. They include the rising cost of healthcare; and the possibility Social Security benefits may be reduced, or eliminated altogether.

People need to save

Based on these numbers,  there is a thriving market for your expertise.

Potential clients include, but are not limited to, individuals approaching the end of their working years or who have recently retired.

While you don’t want to scare anyone, it’s reasonable to point out Americans are living longer.

According to the Social Security Administration, a woman who is 65 today will, on average, live to be 86.5 years old.

Meanwhile, a 65-year-old man has an average life expectancy of 84 years.

When you help someone create a retirement plan or shore up an existing one, you ease their minds about the future. That’s powerful stuff.

Even better, you don’t have to find these people. LeadingResponse will do it for you.

Retirement planning solutions

Our SeminarConnect digital marketing system uses geo-targeting to identify qualified leads and invite attendees to workshops and dinner seminars.

You may select from our suite of presentations on subjects such as Tax-Savvy Retirement, Social Security Maximization, Social Security for Women, and Indexed Universal Life. Or, you can develop your own.

Because knowledge is power, we’ve created a helpful infographic with Baby Boomer retirement statistics.

An opportunity to grow

For the risk-averse, SeminarConnect comes with a guarantee.

If we do not hit your RSVP target, LeadingResponse will refund your money, or apply it to a future campaign.

In closing, we know that advisors are much more likely to close sales with individuals they meet face-to-face, than through any other prospecting method.

Got it?

There are people out there who need you.

Contact us today to connect with them.

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Cost Per Lead and the Long-Term Value of a New Client

Ever calculated your cost per lead?

We do it for clients all the time.

After nearly a quarter-century in the seminar marketing business, LeadingResponse has connected thousands of financial advisors and insurance agents with millions of qualified prospects.

Let’s look at how cost per lead factors into long-term client value.

Client valuationsadministrative tasks

One of the nation’s biggest inbound marketing automation providers, HubSpot, tracks customer acquisition cost (CAC).

It’s what they spend on sales and marketing, including programs and activities, salaries, commissions, bonuses and overhead in relation to attracting and converting new leads.

HubSpot determines CAC by dividing these costs by the number of new customers.

Meanwhile, Huify, a small, regional digital agency (and HubSpot partner), measures customer lifetime value.

They define it as the estimated profit generated by a customer over the course of their business relationship with the company.

Calculating Cost Per Lead

If you’re an advisor or agent trying to attract more clients and boost production, ask yourself the following question:

Am I getting a $3 to $8 back for each dollar I’m investing?

If the answer is no, it may be time to change up your strategy.

Some companies and financial professionals stick to digital channels to promote their seminars and workshops. Are you among them?

Whether you realize it or not, you’re ignoring the approximately 40% of your prospects who aren’t online.

That’s why we use both digital seminar marketing and direct mail seminar marketing.

A balancing act

The most talented sales professional can, at times, find it challenging to juggle competing priorities.

He or she must serve existing clients while pursuing new ones.

But keep this in mind: people research companies before doing business with them.

Therefore, if they see advisors and agents sharing positive reviews on social media, they will assume they’ll have a positive experience, too.

On the other hand, if clients are complaining about a company’s products or service, that can hurt a salesperson’s chance of closing a deal.

Knowing your audience

Building relationships and earning clients’ trust is critical to the success of any business.

To date, LeadingResponse has delivered one million seminars.

Along the way, we have collected massive amounts of client response data.

For example, we can identify prospects using criteria including income, net worth, Income Producing Assets (IPAs), home ownership, and more.

Hyper-local targeting helps ensure we pull the right list, send the right invitation, and extend the right offer.

Being flexible

To keep costs down, some companies only do food-free events.

LeadingResponse gives clients the option of dinner seminars, workshops without meals, or a combination of the two, if they’d like to mix things up.

No matter which format you choose, with our Seminar Assurance program, the results are guaranteed.

Have you hesitated to try seminars because of the expense? If so, LeadingResponse has a monthly payment plan to help you get started.

Face to face

By meeting with prospects in person rather than just relying on digital promotions, financial advisors and insurance agents are much more likely to convert them into clients.

Since our founding in 1995, we have connected over 22 million consumers to advisors and insurance agents who can answer their questions and assist them with retirement planning.

If you would like to learn more about our lead generation and client acquisition solutions, or you’re ready to explore the possibilities, get in touch with us.

 

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Gain Seminar Planning Insights at Our Marketing Summit

Our two-day Marketing Summit is a crash course in using social seminars and workshops to grow your client base.

When advisors and insurance agents apply our proven methods, they get better leads.

And higher-quality leads are, of course, more likely to convert.

To date, LeadingResponse has promoted one million seminars.

Therefore, you will gain valuable insights at our Marketing Summit Sept.19-20 in Tampa.

Over the course of the summit, our team will cover a lot of ground. They’ll show you direct mail marketing processes and digital strategies to help maximize your reach and obtain exclusive leads – plus much, much more.

Learn from the very best

LeadingResponse Marketing Summit Presenter Jorge Villar

Social Dinner Seminar Pioneer Jorge Villar

You will not find this level of talent anywhere else.

To begin, we’re assembling a panel with decades of experience between them.

Panelists include John Ripley with SmarterRetirementSolutions; and the legendary Jorge Villar.

As you may know, Jorge is the founder of RME360 and the original social seminar marketer.

Jorge will take you behind the scenes of the direct marketing process, from production steps, technology, lists and demographics, and invitation design. And he will draw upon his nearly 25 years in the business to separate seminar myths from seminar realities.

You will learn when to do an event with food or without food; and the best types of restaurants to use when providing meals for attendees.

Both days, Jorge will share share stories from his career that we are certain will motivate, inspire and entertain you.

Our consultants will share:

  • Case studies of advisors who boosted revenue using our solutions
  • Insights from top-producing advisors currently working with us
  • How direct mail and digital lead acquisition complement each other
  • Applying industry best practices to prospecting and seminar marketing

Worth the investment

Reserve your seat now to lock in the early bird rate of $499 (not including travel and accommodations).

Are you reluctant to host seminars because of the cost? Don’t be!

After the summit, if you sign up for LeadingResponse marketing services and are not completely satisfied with the results, we will refund 100% of your investment.

(FYI, LeadingResponse offers monthly payment plans.)

If growing your business is a priority, you will depart our Marketing Summit with all the tools you need to do just that.

Sign up today by contacting your Marketing Consultant, or call us toll-free at 1 (800) 795-2773.

 

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RME360 and Resource Solutions Are Now LeadingResponse

As they say, change is inevitable.

And we are no exception.

For example, RME360 and Resource Solutions are now operating as LeadingResponse.

(Shortly after the owners of RME360 and Resource Solutions bought IM Solutions, a Texas-based provider of online lead generation for attorneys, they renamed it LeadingResponse.)

By adopting the LeadingResponse name corporate-wide, we’re positioning the three businesses as one company.

Strengthening the brand

Only the name is changing.

Our clients can expect the same quality lead generation and customer service we have provided all along.

They will also continue to work with the same dedicated employees.

“I am excited about the growth and evolution of RME360 and Resource Solutions into LeadingResponse,” said Jorge Villar, founder of RME360.

Management’s direction for LeadingResponse is to expand organically and through acquisitions. The company currently has 160 employees.

Revamping the website

Over the next few months,  we will re-route traffic from the RME360 and Resource Solutions websites to our new website.

As we complete the transition of our systems, the RME and RS sites will be phased out.

In the meantime, check out the refreshed LeadingResponse.com website.

While the look and feel are similar to the previous LR site, there is now more complete information about our products and services.

But that’s just the start.

Our public website now offers a window into who we are, what we do and how we do it.

Tapping new leadership

In early July, the owners of LeadingResponse, private equity firm ICV Partners, appointed Matthew Kearney as CEO.

At that time, the previous CEO, Charles DallAcqua, retired after five years with the company and assumed the role of senior adviser and board member.

“I’m very pleased with ICV’s selection, and I’m confident Matt will ensure that LeadingResponse continues on its growth trajectory,” Charles said.

Meanwhile, Matt has been busy settling in.

“LeadingResponse customers have a resourced, focused and trusted partner to provide them with the right marketing solutions that are optimized for these constantly evolving times,” he said.

“I can’t think of a more exciting place to be.”

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